Promote the Migrant Vote is an action kit designed to support migrants, refugees and their supporters, to mobilise their communities around the UK 2017 General Election on June the 8. It provides information on the electoral process as well as ideas and suggestions for actions and events to encourage people to register and vote. All migrants and refugees, including those without eligibility to vote in these elections, can use this guide to organise events and contribute to the democratic process.
For many migrant communities, elections can be an alienating and disempowering experience. The issues affecting us do not appear in the national conversation, and there is a sense that our interests are not being represented. This absence of representation can translate into fear, frustration, anger and apathy.
We can make these elections different.
There is much we can do at election to make our voices heard. Immigration will feature as a central issue, and it is crucial that the experiences of migrant communities are part of the national debate and addressed by the parties running in these elections. Together we can act to end the marginalisation of our communities, grow our power and express our demands for freedom, fairness and democracy.
The Promote the Vote guide explains how, over the next few weeks, we can act locally and be part of a coordinated national movement to make this happen. Ten national organisations have created this pack together, and will be organising events around the country. These events will be powerful, they will be vibrant and they will be celebrating what we love about our communities and what we have in common. Above all, these events will place the experiences of our members facing uncertainty, fear and isolation onto the national agenda.
Nearly 16 million people who were eligible to vote did not do so in the 2015 General Election. Many millions of them are not registered to vote or need information and support to know how to exercise their democratic rights. Many of our communities also struggle to participate due to language barriers and a lack of familiarity with the democratic process. In this coming mobilisation, we can support our communities by educating them on how to register, vote and use the election to amplify the demands of migrants.
The pack is divided into five sections. Click on each section or scroll down the dropdown menu to read each one.
- What you Need Know: the basic technical and legal information you need to have about how to engage in this election
- Engaging Our Communities: What the issues are and how to talk about them
- Mobilising those without Citizenship: how communities not eligible to vote can participate in these elections
- Voter Registration Drives: how you can support eligible members to register to vote
- Get out the Vote: what you can do to ensure that members turn out to vote in the June 8 General Elections